It was a roller-coaster ride in the cattle business the first half of 2010, but one positive trend remains a constant – the trend toward higher-quality beef, according to Paul Dykstra, beef cattle specialist with the Certified Angus Beef (CAB) brand.

Dykstra tracks variations in the USDA harvest and grading reports in the weekly e-newsletter column, "Rearview Mirror on Quality."

“Relatively attractive prices for cull cows and bulls beefed up overall supplies since last winter, the number of all cattle harvested being up 1.8% over 2009,” Dykstra said. “That’s ironic, considering the U.S. cowherd is still shrinking at an annual rate of about 2%. It also means we are likely to see fewer of these culls on the market the rest of this year.”

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